Monday, November 30, 2015


So how did Alan Yentob, Editor and Presenter of Imagine, light upon straight-line architect Sir David Chipperfield as this week's subject for a documentary of cinematic proportions - 1 hour 15 minutes ?

David, two weeks away from his 62nd birthday, doesn't use his full title for work. His London address is a flat up Portland Place, just yards from the BBC; he likes to eat at The Wolseley, just across the road from The Royal Academy, both favourites of our Al; and takes liquid refreshment at The Connaught and Claridges; he has offices in London, Berlin, Milan and Shanghai. He's got two big commissions in New York (will Al have to drag himself across the pond again ?). He has built a holiday home near La Coruna (more or less certain to feature). He's built studios for sculptor and fellow Royal Academician Antony Gormley, another who received the Imagine honour this season.

Al and David met through business in 2001 when the architect was selected to design BBC Scotland's new HQ on the wastelands of Glasgow's Pacific (formerly Plantation) Quay, with Greg Dyke and Al among the luminaries on the panel. Sadly David didn't see all elements of his proposal through to completion, as the BBC's building chums got worried about costs.

David curated the Venice Biennale in 2012, and invited Al onto the judging panel.

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